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Old 8th April 2012, 08:22 PM   #61
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Originally Posted by andyjevans View Post
Very interesting new product! Any idea of pricing? Will it be within the range of mortals?

Andy


if you have to ask ...

compared to Voxativ, Feastrex, or even Lowther, I think we're still talking Lexus performance for Corolla pricing
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Old 9th April 2012, 09:13 AM   #62
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I'm a very strong believer in Mark Audio, needless to say. My hope would be that new iterations start to get really good sales which they deserve - hopefully that will keep prices down and lead to widespread use and a steady increase in reputation.

I still think there's some way to go with public take-up of these speaker units. In the UK there are a lot of Jordan fans who haven't - as I have - heard the two units in A-B tests in the same enclosure. So they persist in thinking that if you want a fullrange metal cone you buy a Jordan. I have huge respect for Jordan - Ted was a pioneer and it was a groundbreaking product that inspired many.

But at this point the Alpair units are so far ahead that the only real excuse for not using them is not having heard them. But that's a big ask - where in the UK would you be able to hear the units. I see marketing for Alpair as being a bit like Hypex - strong base in the OEM and online forum communities. Works for Hypex. Pass would be another slightly different case (publishing schematics), though he has extensive shop-sold products you can demo.

Interesting challenge - selling things you really need to hear first.

Andy
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Old 9th April 2012, 09:37 AM   #63
Goto is offline Goto  United Kingdom
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Originally Posted by andyjevans View Post
I'm a very strong believer in Mark Audio, needless to say. My hope would be that new iterations start to get really good sales which they deserve - hopefully that will keep prices down and lead to widespread use and a steady increase in reputation.

I still think there's some way to go with public take-up of these speaker units. In the UK there are a lot of Jordan fans who haven't - as I have - heard the two units in A-B tests in the same enclosure. So they persist in thinking that if you want a fullrange metal cone you buy a Jordan. I have huge respect for Jordan - Ted was a pioneer and it was a groundbreaking product that inspired many.

But at this point the Alpair units are so far ahead that the only real excuse for not using them is not having heard them. But that's a big ask - where in the UK would you be able to hear the units. I see marketing for Alpair as being a bit like Hypex - strong base in the OEM and online forum communities. Works for Hypex. Pass would be another slightly different case (publishing schematics), though he has extensive shop-sold products you can demo.

Interesting challenge - selling things you really need to hear first.

Andy
Andy

Good thoughts.

There was at least one UK distributor for MA, not sure if they're still in the game.

It is a challenge for Mark to get his excellent drivers in front of the ears of potential customers. First you have to generate interest, then you need support from someone with the skills to make decent cabinets that will do your drivers justice, and with the energy and marketing prowess to make some noise (as it were).

I have only admiration for anyone undertaking to build a business in this fairly esoteric sector of a smallish market. The amount of work involved in designing and manufacturing a product like the Alpair range must be staggering, especially compared to the financial rewards.

I had not heard any MA drivers when I bought the Alpair 7.3s last autumn. My interest was piqued after I was given a pair of Bandors to play with and I went hunting for the same only bigger and better.

Now I will probably buy the new Alpair 12s. I have been bowled over by the performance of the 7.3s, but even in a small listening room, they have their limitations due to the necessarily limited cone excursion. Within their limitation they have proven so good that I haven't even built proper cabs - they are still mounted in quickly knocked together OB panels that I made to run them in (I can be an impatient sob). I really need to try some other configurations, if only for the sake of aesthetics!

For a UK importer/distributor for products in any specialist market sector, the big challenges are the balance of stock holding/pricing and getting demonstration product out "there" where people can hear them for themselves. Even though the UK is a small country, travel can be a limiting factor in reaching customers. The public/trade shows are a joke, and very expensive for exhibitors, and those with the biggest names and budgets generally shout loudest (often literally).

I think generally amps/electronics are a relatively easy diy sale, speakers a little more challenging as fewer people have the space/skills/tools to make their own cabinets.

All we, as existing customers can do is spread the word, and keep buying the products

Mark
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Old 9th April 2012, 01:58 PM   #64
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Thanks Fellas,
I musch appreciate the support and good will. Being Easter Monday, I'm allowing myself a little time for some reflection.

I much enjoyed the time I spent with Ted Jordan. I have much admiration for his stamina and spirit. Ted is of the traditional school of British design, something sadly thats fast disappearing. Ted and me had our good times and our not so good times, sadly our association was not destined to last. We had markedly differing ideas on cone and other key component design. To be fair to Ted, I was the one who eventually pushed for radical development of lower mass power-trains using new materials and shallow profile cones, with all the inherent production, operational and financial risks. It became inevitable that we part our ways and so Markaudio was born in its own right.

For the last 2+ years, Matsubara san, the farther designer of the Fe series has been my great supporter. I well remember our first meeting where I showed him the Alpair 12 prototype, with its ultra thin front suspension, incapable of supporting the cone, he told me I was absolutely nuts to attempt a single mechanical suspension driver of this size! But he listened to my plan, poured over my drawings and we came up with the mother of all rear suspensions. A few weeks later, he came to a Markaudio listening event in Hong Kong and was bowled over by what he heard. The rest is history as the saying goes.

As important is Evan Yu. This guy has been my right-hand man for the last 5 years. He's one of these guys you need in any factory to get things done. He also a descent conventional driver designer in his own right. He also thinks I'm nuts at times, but he knows me well enough to give pretty much all my ideas a fair go. More recently, I've had the pleasure to work with Jeff Tanigichi san and Kitagawa san, 2 first rate audio product engineers. Many an hour is spent debating over all sort of developments, from custom connectors to changing over to fused spider mounting systems, you may imagine some of the daily conversation, but its worth it in the end.

I hope our pioneering sprit continues and home custom speaker builders continue to invest their confidence in our work. My hearty thanks to all the guys that have bought and used Markaudio drivers, as without this support, Markaudio couldn't exist. My hope is that we gradually spread more confidence in Full-Range drivers. I believe there is a big future for single point source, single cone full-range emitters.

I'm glad of all the help, support and encouragement as we're still a young company with hopes to make into main-stream audio some day in the future.

Thanks
Mark.

Last edited by markaudio; 9th April 2012 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 9th April 2012, 02:33 PM   #65
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Hello Mark,

It's a pleasure to support you and your products - I'm continually telling people here in the UK how good they are. I'm tempted to convert my Alpair 10 mk 1 in to Gen 2 ones, but you're got me really interested in the 12s.

One question - I'm pretty happy with the 10s but I'd like to know if I'd get more high treble with the Gen 2 versions. Also how the new 12 compares in high treble. I'm not quite getting the top frequencies on cymbals and violins, though at 60 my hearing is flattening off and it's not a huge issue. I've tried adding ribbon tweeters with a simple cap rolloff but I'm not getting the integration right unfortunately so haven't pursued it. I don't want to get into bi-amping. Ideas and comments?

Andy
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Old 9th April 2012, 02:46 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andyjevans View Post
Hello Mark,

It's a pleasure to support you and your products - I'm continually telling people here in the UK how good they are. I'm tempted to convert my Alpair 10 mk 1 in to Gen 2 ones, but you're got me really interested in the 12s.

One question - I'm pretty happy with the 10s but I'd like to know if I'd get more high treble with the Gen 2 versions. Also how the new 12 compares in high treble. I'm not quite getting the top frequencies on cymbals and violins, though at 60 my hearing is flattening off and it's not a huge issue. I've tried adding ribbon tweeters with a simple cap rolloff but I'm not getting the integration right unfortunately so haven't pursued it. I don't want to get into bi-amping. Ideas and comments?

Andy
Hello Andy,
Good to hear from you and much appreciate your support.

Thinking about our hearing capabilities (I'm 54), I'd suggest the Alpair 10 Gen 2. It will assist your hearing as there's a more gain over 10-kHz. Sadly, we're both affected by the march of time so hearing cymbals on some recordings could be more challenging.

One thing I noticed about the Alp12P is just how nicely balanced classical strings come over from this driver. Certainly the most dynamic to date without being sharp. Depending on your room size (4 x 5 metres or more) and the availability of a low power amp, the 12P could offer you more help.

Re integration using tweets, integration is the common challenge of 2 way or multiway systems. Given the inherent phase differentials between the drivers, its not easy to make it all sound natural

Cheers
Mark.
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Old 16th April 2012, 01:57 AM   #67
Bigun is offline Bigun  Canada
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my drivers are Mark-designed EL-70's in my home-brewed oaken style boxes (6 litre) and the amp is a home-brew SET, a 6H8C (6SN7 equivalent) driving a 6H5C (6AS7 equivalent). I use the 8 Ohm tap on the output transformer so that I get a bit more juice. But we're still talking something in the range of 2W. Sound level perfectly fine for 90% of what it's used for - family background music in our living room.

(sorry of the EL-70 doesn't 'count' as an MA driver - please delete my post if you want)

I am interested in Mark's new 12's now.....
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Old 18th April 2012, 07:22 AM   #68
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I am currently using topping tp20. any good recommended diy SS amps for this, say around 40watts should be ok i guess. I have alpair 7 mk2 in a sealed small cabinet. Desktop use, small room, 12x12x10. I am not looking for more power but better sq.
I cant seem to find documentation for older products on the ma website. Could someone please tell me if these are 4 ohms or 6 ohms drivers. I am asking because I was thinking of myref gainclone, but that seems to have issues with low impedence drivers.
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Old 18th April 2012, 10:36 AM   #69
Goto is offline Goto  United Kingdom
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I am currently using topping tp20. any good recommended diy SS amps for this, say around 40watts should be ok i guess. I have alpair 7 mk2 in a sealed small cabinet. Desktop use, small room, 12x12x10. I am not looking for more power but better sq.
I cant seem to find documentation for older products on the ma website. Could someone please tell me if these are 4 ohms or 6 ohms drivers. I am asking because I was thinking of myref gainclone, but that seems to have issues with low impedence drivers.
In that setup a smallish class A would be one approach. I'd be amazed if you needed even 40watts per channel in your room/setup. I use Hypex UCD180s with my Alpair 7.3s and use only a fraction of the available gain (I have lowered the overall gain of my system to ensure I am able to extract an optimal performance - I use digital attenuation so need to optimise my bits!).

Class A or D would get my vote, though Class A may be more expensive to implement and run.
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Old 18th April 2012, 07:00 PM   #70
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Regarding MA drivers use Lautsprechershop got my CHR-70 within 3 days from order, excellent service. Amps ran them with class a,b & d they are just superb drivers IMO, for my ears it would be the Aleph mini.

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